REDDING, Calif. — California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection officials have concluded that last summer’s Dixie Fire was started by electrical lines owned by Pacific Gas and Electric Company.
This fire started on July 13 and burned 963,309 acres. It was the state’s second largest single fire. Near Chico, California’s 2018 Camp Fire, the fire began in the Feather Valley Canyon southeast.
In Plumas County, the fire destroyed Greenville, a historic Gold Rush era community. It also threatened many other mountain communities. It destroyed 1,329 structures in five North State counties, including Shasta and Tehama.
Firefighters announced 100% containment of the massive blaze on Oct. 25.
Cal Fire blames the utility for a number of fires, including this latest one. Cal Fire said PG&E equipment was at fault for starting the Camp Fire in Butte County, which killed 85 people and destroyed most of the Butte County town of Paradise.
PG&E has also been charged with manslaughter in the deaths of four Shasta County residents who died during the 2020 Zogg Fire.
Cal Fire said the Dixie Fire was started when a tree came in contact with a PG&E distribution line. A tree also contacted an electric line in Western Shasta County, causing the Zogg Fire to start.
IS IT ANOTHER PLACE?:California wildfires get more intense each year
While Cal Fire released its findings about the Dixie Fire on Tuesday, PG&E filed paperwork with the California Public Utilities Commission last summer stating that its equipment may have ignited the blaze.
Plumas and Butte counties were forced to evacuate thousands of people by the Dixie Fire. The fire was fought for three months by firefighters before it was finally contained in October.
Federal and state officials also estimated that they spent $630 million on the fight against fire in October.
An investigative report on the Dixie Fire was sent to the Butte County District Attorney’s Office, Cal Fire said. All questions regarding the findings of the fire agency were referred to Cal Fire.
CAL FIRE EXPLAINS:Dixie Fire is not California’s largest single wildfire.
Follow Damon Arthur on Twitter at @damonarthur_RS.